No studded tires? How about zip ties?
This might actually be cheap/easy enough that I’ll try it.
I think you just saved me about $6.00 worth of zip-ties and an hour of work, followed by a really loud “DAMNIT!”
Yea, it’ll only work with disc brakes.. or I guess a brakeless fixie. I found a page that showed how someone put chains on his bike with disc brakes, but it involved lots of metal wires, chain segments, zipties, and various other fasteners. I considered it for about 3 seconds before determining I’d likely chuck the bike in a corner for the remainder of the winter if I ever got a flat. Cutting a couple dozen zip ties wouldn’t break my heart though.
As long as you’ve got a sharp knife or a pair of wirecutters in your seat bag, and don’t need the faux-chains to get home.
All this is moot for me as I am increasingly avoiding going out on the roads whenever they’re snow-covered, on bike, foot, or car. I have hot chocolate at home, and NO FENDERS.
There was very very very little traffic this morning, one of the best days of the year for commuting …
Here is a not so positive review of this method:
Anyone selling studded tires? I’m in the market, I think.
A friend of mine was trying to sell me a set last year, although they were 26″ MTB tires, I assume you’re looking for your CC?
I decided not to buy them since I wasn’t having any real trouble with the knobbies on my MTB. I just took it easy on the *really* treacherous days – which, even last year there were only a few of. Although, I didn’t do much riding on the trails last winter – which I assume had a lot more ice than the roads.
After reading the review I think I’m going to stick with my Schwalbe Marathon Winters.
Every bike in the house has 700c wheels, even the mountain bike (which is where I’d put them).
Iceman, you like the marathon winters? that is what I was leaning towards, provided no inexpensive used ones show up.
dwillen, They seem to do the job quite well (don’t really have experience with anything else for reference though) in slush and packed snow/ice.
i believe there are some directions on making your own over at the thick bikes site
After reading a bunch of reviews, and warnings of ice patches here this morning, I’ve settled on the marathon winters.
Anyone have a line on a local source (700c), before I send my money into cyberspace?
@dwillen: Good luck with finding a local source for the Winters. I ended up ordering mine from Peter White a couple years back.
how much of a difference to your ride does having studded tires make? i’ve been considering them for a month or so now. in the past, i haven’t had very long winter commutes and often just walked during the colder months. now i’m planning on biking in every day of the year, so i’m wondering how useful i’d find these things. my commute is entirely on-road, and i’m riding slick 700x38s.
i suppose the quality of ride for the next few days will give me a good idea as to the necessity of studs.
I just ordered these.. http://www.biketiresdirect.com/product/innova-tundra-wolf-studded-snow-tire
will see how they do.
Apparently the board thinks im spamming and wont let me post the link.. but I just bought some Innova Tundras in 700×35 for $35 each from bike tires direct dot com
@hiddenvariable: there’s certainly a difference, in terms of weight and road noise on bare pavement
They seem grippier to me; also, climbing out of icy ruts seems to dump me on my side significantly less frequently than, say, my WTB Allterrainosauri did.
That said, I’m a Cautious Charlie on ice even with the studs, so I can’t speak to how far they push open the handling envelope.
Called a few LBS and gave up. I ordered up a set from the interweb.
My experience with studded tires is that they are condition dependent. On dry pavement they are the worst, noisiest, heaviest, most terrible tires on the planet and make me want to die. On ice and on tight packed snow they are wonderful, superb, shining with golden light and making angels sing. On loose packed snow and slush, they’re fine but not any different than other knobbies.
So, it’s a Pittsburgh winter. How many times will you need to commute on icy roads? Will the joy outweigh the suffering?
I did this kinda as a prank on a coworkers fixed gear last week just to see if he would notice. I only put one zip tie on there. He said he heard it and wanted to stop but kept going. He said it only lasted about a mile before he heard it break and fall off. He never knew what it was until I told him the next day.
I have had the Schwalbe Marathon Winters 700Cx32 on since a nice spill 1-1/2 weeks ago. I also have the Innova Tundras.
I like the marathons, because their carbide studs last longer than the carbon steel studs on the innovas. Also, it’s less rubber to spin ’round. those innovas are wicked heavy, but they go go go in the deeper snows that the marathons will loose traction in.
I would suggest purchasing the nokian replacement studs, instead of the innovas. like the schwalbes, the nokias are carbide and not the softer carbon steel.
I try to revel in the “angry bee sound” the studs make on the dry stretches of pavement. Since I don’t have the oportunity to do a daily commute by bike any more I wind up being more selective (i.e. whimp) about when I ride.
dwillen, i think pro bikes stocks them, but i’m not 100% on that.
Ok, this is an interesting thread. But I want to know if I’d be able to manage if I just put on knobby tires (which I happen to have in the garage).
I’m not expecting to be able to manage black ice but I would like to be able to handle ~1-2 inch of fresh snow and maybe some packed snow (once some cars have been by).
Is this a reasonable goal? This is for commuting in the East End.
last year I had nothing but knobby tires, and was able to ride down arlington/josephine and to the strip district from there every day – but I also had a mountain bike, so my tires were 2-2.5″ wide.
I think knobby/MTB tires are fine for riding on the road. Studs only really help with ice.
If I did more riding on the trails I might think about studded… already last night there was some ice on the HMB ramps
In the winter I run a slick road tire in the back and a cross tire up front and can get just about anywhere anyone else can.
If anybody wants to play in some deep snow, there’s a 4 or 5″ deep drift for about 100 ft on the N end of the 62ST bridge sidewalk. I don’t know why it would pile up there, it seems like theres a pretty stiff breeze blowing W to E on the bridge. There’s a bare strip also you can ride on if you need to.
I have been commuting for 15+ years in P-burgh (6 mainly Squirrel Hill and Oakland, then SH to North shore since then) on normal if not balding road tires. Road bike is ok to a few inches of snow, but then I switch to mountain bike with knobbies. Between better traction and a wider grip, that is good until nearly 10 inches if loose powder, less if wet.
Smooth Ice is not a problem if going straight, and needs care if cornering. It’s when the trail goes through a freeze thaw cycle and gets frozen uneven is when it is hardest to ride, but I don’t think studs would help there.
Though I have yet to receive my studded tires (don’t order from bikeman.com, btw.. they list stuff as in stock, then email you 2 days later telling you it is backordered for at least a month!) I understand that studs (especially when they are on the sides of the tire) help the most in icy ruts like when a trail goes through a freeze/thaw cycle. I’ll be sure to report back on what I think of this.
I have cross tires on my bike now. I biked home around 9pm on Monday when there was a dusting of snow on all the roads. For roads that were well salted, it was fine. Biking up the hill to my house in Greenfield kind of sucked though. I was in the lowest gear and still spinning out my rear wheel trying to get up the hill. I know from past experience, the hill gets waaay worse than that, to the point where cars can barely drive up it. I hope that studs help, and wont be as much work as biking around on my 29×2.4″ knobbies. It would take me hours to get anywhere with those, but boy would it be fun.
If any mail-order merchant takes more than 30 days to ship a product, by law you can cancel your order and get a full refund. If some other merchant actually has those tires in stock, you can buy from them instead.
If bikeman.com regularly lists out-of-stock items as in stock, perhaps they need a friendly reminder from the FTC that they’re not allowed to do that.
They emailed me and suggested alternative tires I could buy instead, or they would put my order on backorder. I asked them to cancel it.
What irks me, is they have the tires listed on their ebay store too.
Yeah, Peter’s teh man. I just put a wheel on the truing stand that he built for me, oh, 25,000 miles ago. Still almost perfect.
You must be logged in to reply to this topic. Click here to login.